In light of some of the controversy and discussions going around the internet about young adult fiction (and also because it’s been a doozy of a week/weekend and I really don’t have any posts prepped this week), I’m going to share a post I wrote back in April on the Ferret blog. It’s both a rant about my (personal) frustrations with YA fiction, and some things I think would make it better.
YA does serve a huge purpose in the publishing world, and in people’s lives, and I’m not belittling it. But there are some major trends in it I see as… taking the easy way out. I know that not nearly all submitted novels get published, and publishers are likely to take what sells over what’s influential, but they are responding to the market.
So perhaps the market needs to change?
I’m going to be honest here – I am not aboard the young adult train. I rarely read it, and I don’t write it at all. (I have tried to write it. It always manages to turn into adult fiction.)
But it’s taken the writing world by storm.
Young adult books are in high demand – they are at the forefront of every bookstore I walk into, and it’s not just ‘young adults’ who read them. I know more middle-aged women who read young adult books than I do young adults who read young adult books.
And I find it baffling.
So many of the newer young adult books are… the same. Take a high school, throw in a female protagonist, one male protagonist, one male antagonist, and some sort of superpower/terrible secret, and ta-dah! One YA bestseller coming right up! Don’t forget the…
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